Jimmy Wales (right) believes profoundly in the Wikimedia Foundation's mission:
Imagine a world in which every single person on the planet is given free access to the sum of all human knowledge. That's what we're doing.
If that mission sounds a bit grand, that's because it is. The amazing thing about this crusade, possibly the most altruistic and ambitious goal ever undertaken, is that you can help. The grand mission, should you choose to accept it, belongs to you—and to every other highly privileged, highly educated person you know.
Wikipedia needs you
One of the most surprising things I heard last week at Wikimania was that the number of active editors is falling, down 4000 since 2011 at 85 000. You can help fix it:
- Create an account to watch pages, change the look and behaviour of Wikipedia, and edit articles without revealing your IP address.
- Next time you see something wrong or incomplete, edit it! Just click Edit.
- Help improve articles on your home town, your hobbies, and your profession.
- Pick a subject you care about (Well logging?) and look for red links, which are articles in need of creation.
- Join a project like WikiProject:Geology to collaborate with other editors.
- The Wikimedia Foundation runs on donations. Donate!
- If you want somewhere to practise, use your Wikipedia Sandbox (requires an account), or poke around on SEGwiki or SubSurfWiki, where you're always welcome.
Imagine a world in which you can contribute to the sum of all human knowledge. That's what we have.
I made a handy cheatsheet, in case you're not familiar with the markup language in MediaWiki-based wikis. It looks scary at first, but once you get accustomed to it, it's fast and easy to use.
Almost anything is possible in wiki markup, but these are the easy things. If there's something else you wish was on there, leave a suggestion in the comments for this post.